Guys, I don't know what happened between Christmas and now, but it is FREEZING in the Northeast. Like, so cold. In the single digits cold. Last week my mom and I went to the Catskills and stayed at the Foxfire Mountain House (heaven) and we could barely leave the inn. We attempted to go on a "walk" in one of the reservoirs along a beautiful lake with an amazing view of the mountains, but we barely made it three minutes before turning back. And things have not really improved temperature-wise since. Tomorrow there is supposed to be a "bomb cyclone" storm that involves heavy wind and a lot of snow. Does anyone even know what that means?? It's safe to say that this is the time of year when I start heavily considering a move to a tropical climate.
Anyways, weather aside, the new year has arrived and while I am not one for resolutions, I wanted to share that I have made some pretty significant changes to my diet over the past couple of weeks and am staying far far away from carbs and processed sugars for the most part except on special occasions. I'm doing it for health reasons and while I am still going to be baking, as it's what I love (although won't be indulging, sadly), I'm going to be sharing some veggie/protein centric recipes more often. I hope you guys don't mind! It's been hard so far and some days I find myself cheating, but the more I load up on veggies the better I feel. I'm also looking forward to embracing vegetables.
Since we're talking about my new way of eating, I decided to share a recipe for SOUP since it is something I always love. I'm excited to experiment with more soups this winter, and it is also very timely given the current polar vortex we are experiencing.
In a large heavy-bottom pot, heat olive oil. Add in shallots and garlic and cook until soft. Add in carrots, onion and sweet potato and sauté until soft. Mix in spices and kobucha squash and keep simmering.
After the potatoes are soft, add in the chicken broth and water, along with the bay leave and rosemary. Keep simmering until all of the flavors are blended together and the vegetables are soft, about 30 minutes.
Turn off heat and let the soup cool slightly. Remove the rosemary and bay leaves with a slotted spoon. Transfer to a blender (or use an immersion blender) and blend until smooth. If the consistency is too thick, add some more water. Transfer mixture back into the pot and simmer to warm up again. Serve warm and top with yogurt and seeds if desired!
Roasted Winter Squash Soup
- 2 medium kobucha squash, roasted and insides scooped out
- 1 large yellow onion, sliced
- 5 large carrots, peeled and sliced
- 1 large sweet potato, peeled and sliced
- 1 shallot, sliced
- 2 tbsp. fresh garlic
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 quart of chicken broth (homemade or low-sodium if store bought)
- 2 cups water
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 sprig of fresh rosemary
- 1 tsp. smoked paprika
- 1 tsp. dried basil
- salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper to taste